Bicycle Diaries: On the 11th hour...

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On the 11th hour...

of the 11th day
of the 11th month,
90 years ago,
World War I, or

the Great War, or
the '14-'18 War:
the War to
End All Wars

A seven-meter tall Poppy Man at London’s Heathrow Airport reminds travelers of Remembrance Day. The Royal British Legion created it to represent the help the organization gives to veterans and active-service soldiers alike.
Anthem For Doomed Youth

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries for them; no prayers nor bells,
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,--
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.

What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

Wilfred Owen

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Anonymous Karl McCracken said...

The horror is just unimaginable, but despite there being just one survivor of the trenches still with us (Harry Patch, 110), we will not forget.

There was a poem on the radio this afternoon from Rebecca Oughton, a 13 year-old girl that said it pretty well.

Or if that's not your cup of tea, there's always Wilfred again:

"If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est
Pro patria mori."

11/11/08 16:44  

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